Three key members of staff have joined the team as Wivenhoe House in Colchester prepares to open this summer as a luxurious country house hotel after a £10 million restoration.
Wivenhoe House is the home of the Edge Hotel School, the UK’s first hotel school based entirely in a fully operational commercial hotel, where degree level students will learn by ‘doing’ from academic and industry experts to become the hospitality leaders of the future.
Food and beverage manager Francois Pieters, 30, has joined the hotel from the Bedford Lodge Hotel in Newmarket and has more than 11 years’ experience in the industry. He has previously worked as restaurant and bar manager at the Devere Royal Bath and senior supervisor at Simpsons in the Strand in London, part of Fairmont Hotels which includes the Savoy.
Francois said he was looking forward to the new challenge: “I’m part of a new concept and have the opportunity to form part of an idea that could change the industry as we know it.”
Also joining the team at Wivenhoe House as head housekeeper is Aleksandra Zysk-Lobo, who has worked on luxury cruise ships for the Florida-based Carnival Cruise Line for more than five years, most recently as housekeeping manager. She has run a housekeeping department with more than 500 rooms and overseen more than 200 staff. She also has experience working at 5-star hotels in Poland and has a Masters degree in Hospitality Management.
Aleksandra said: “I am sure the Edge Hotel School project will not only give a high standard of education to young hotel professionals but also will ensure graduates will be well prepared for managerial positions at top star hotels and restaurants worldwide.”
Stuart Hill has joined the team as sous-chef, working under award-winning executive chef, Paul Boorman. Stuart has worked as chef and tutor at Darlington College of Technology since 2007, and held a number of roles as a chef in restaurants and the hotel trade.
Wivenhoe House, general manager, Stephen Mannock said: “It is exciting to see our experienced new team taking shape as we count down towards opening this summer. Restoration of the historic 18th century house is almost complete and we will be providing an intriguing mixture of the traditional and contemporary in the period suites, Signatures fine dining restaurant and the modern new garden wing and brasserie. We are looking forward to providing a 5-star level of service to all our guests.”